Cavs Fall in Philadelphia
Wrap-Up – In the closing quarter, the Cavs cooled off as the Sixers heated up, and Philly handed the Cleveland the 86-79 decision on Sunday night at the Wells Fargo Center. The Wine and Gold picked up their defensive intensity in Sunday’s loss – their sixth straight – holding Philly to just 42 percent shooting. The problem was that Cleveland shot just 36 percent from the floor.
The Cavs’ starting frontcourt combined for 45 points – led by Anderson Varejao’s 14-point, 15-rebound effort. Tristan Thompson doubled-up for the second straight night, adding 14 points and 13 boards, eight off the offensive glass. Cleveland’s starting backcourt of Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters – the league’s highest scoring combo – combined for just 14 points.
Turning Point – Neither team led by more than five points heading into the final quarter, but early in the fourth Royal Ivey scored on a layup followed by a three-pointer by Jason Richardson. That swelled Philly’s lead to ten – 69-59. And in a tight game with neither team shooting well, that proved to be all the breathing room the Sixers would need.
Game Ball – Tristan Thompson - Although Anderson Varejao was his usual frenetic self, Tristan Thompson brought biggest energy for the second straight game. Thompson’s eight offensive rebounds are a career high. He was 2-of-3 from the stripe, dealt two assists and had a blocked shot. Along with being his second consecutive double-double, he’s now notched double-figure scoring in his last six contests.
By the Numbers – 93.3 … Cavaliers’ free throw percentage (14-15) on Sunday night. Cleveland came into the weekend as the league’s second-worst from the stripe, but shot 75 percent (15-20) against Dallas and bested that mark on Sunday night.
Quotable – Head Coach Byron Scott, on if he’s worried about his squad getting discouraged with the losing streak …
“We should get discouraged; we don’t like losing. You would hope that – now being six straight (losses) … that they’d get a little upset about it, a little p*ssed off, a little angry – all those things. Because if you don’t, then you really don’t care about winning. If you are in that locker room right now and you’re a little ticked off about the way we lost -- or just losing right now – then it shows that you care. And that’s the most important thing.”
Up Next – The Cavaliers complete a home-and-home set with the Sixers, as they welcome Doug Collins’ club to town on Tuesday night, trying to snap a six-game skein before hitting the road for three games – visiting Orlando, Miami and Memphis.